People from all over Australia flooded to Moora between the 5th and 9th September to visit The Last Stand, a free environmental awareness event aiming to highlight the wonders and woes of Midwest wheatbelt native vegetation.
Rachel Walmsley, Moore Catchment Council’s Community Landcare Coordinator who helped organise the event said “The Last Stand was the brainchild of a frustrated group of ladies (and lad) living between Calingiri and Carnamah who wanted to do something to show off all the amazing natural assets we have here in the Midwest but also highlight the threats which are continuing to decimate them including introduced weeds, and roadside clearing. We decided to take a punt and do something different, and so this 5 day event was conceived and organised on a shoestring budget as it needed to happen as soon as possible.”
The event included a symposium on the 5th which attracted 70 people from around the State who came to listen to a plethora of excellent environmental speakers including former Premier and current Conservation Council Chair Carmen Lawrence
Rachel said “The message coming from the talks was clear and unified – we need to conserve our natural environment now or lose it forever.” For the remaining 4 days, The Last Stand played host to over 300 members of the public who visited the event to look at the extensive information displays and art, get up close to native bugs, admire and create bush art, claim free native trees and shrubs, add thoughts to the ‘Tree of Life’ and learn about bush medicine. Rachel said “The event was a huge success and helped open eyes to the real lack of remnant vegetation left and continuing decline in native biodiversity.”
Feedback was overwhelming positive and plans are being made to possibly hold the event again next year as the event served as a good drawcard to attract visitors to Moora. Rachel concluded “The event couldn’t have happened without the input from the volunteer committee – Fiona Falconer, Alison Doley, Sarah Mason, Paulina & Peter Wittwer, Pam Toster, Marie Carter and Lyn Phillips; the cash contributions from Lotterywest and the WA Natural Resource Management Program; and the generous in-kind support from all the speakers and display/event donators, and finally the Shire of Moora for supplying the venue.”